January 8, 2007
Albany -- Since the City of Albany is pushing the issue of running Albany's downtown re-development instead of Albany Tomorrow, Incorporated, called ATI, we must ask ourselves: Can the City of Albany do it better?
A fair question, and starting point is to see how they have done with the projects they oversee now, to see if they're qualified to handle our downtown.
First, the city has always had the control of growing and developing East Albany, have they done a good job with that?
Next we have the city of Albany's take over the former site of a radiator shop on Broad Avenue in 2002, they knew there was contamination there, but botched the sales contract, and it will now take $1 million of our tax dollars to clean up this mess.
You have recently witnessed the dysfunctional relationship between the city management and the management of the city's Water Gas,& Light company-- communication and co-operation with others does not seem to be the city's strong suit.
Right now the city runs the Civic Center and the Municipal Auditorium. Is that really working well? Even with new management there, did you attend more events at both venues last year than in years past? Most would say no.
The city now controls and grants the cable TV franchises. They have provided no competition or choice, and many are un-happy with the current cable service or prices, or both.
Does this sound like a successful track record for oversight and management? The city just does not have a good tract record in this area.
Let's wait and give the city more to handle, when they show they do well, with what they handle now.